Eating Healthy and Smart for 4th of July

tips on eating healthy 4th of July4th is July is quickly coming around the corner and many families celebrate through a traditional BBQ. Barbeque foods are often not the healthiest options (high in fat), but there are a few tips on eating smart and healthy for 4th of July you should consider not only for yourself, but for your friends and family as well. Here’s our advice to you, presented by your woodland hills dentists:
Don’t Overdo It on the BBQ Sauce
Barbeque sauce is often loaded with sugar, giving it that sweet flavor you’ve become accustomed to. Don’t get us wrong, we love bbq sauce, but you should consider going light this 4th of July. If the bbq is poured on while it’s grilling, then stay away from adding more to it afterwards. Remember, bacteria in your mouth love feeding off of sugars!
Bring Your Own Healthy Food
If you know or believe the party you’re heading to will be filled with unhealthy options, then consider bringing your own flavorful and nutritional dish. This could be a gluten-free dessert or a vegetable casserole that is packed with healthy veggies and flavor. You could end up being the star of the party… you never know!
Try to Avoid Sitting Down the Whole Time
Even if you’re just walking around talking to people and catching up, you’re accomplishing one thing: exercise. It may be small, but it’s better than none and it’s a great to prepare for the amount of calories you’ll consume at dinnertime. Dancing is also a great form of exercise. It’s not for everyone but if you have the chance, go for it. Games work well too: ping-pong, billiards, darts; any game involving physicality will help. If weather permits and a swimming pool is present, then hitting the water is another great option.
Grilled Vegetables
We all love grilled meats, but grilled vegetables are a great companion to grilled meats. Popular choices include green beans, asparagus, corn, tomatoes, onions, bell peppers, and potatoes (not French fries!). It’s very possible the have a healthy meal that also tastes absolutely mouth-watering amazing.
Don’t Plan on Dessert
If you eat enough healthy lean meats and vegetables for dinner, then you won’t feel the need to eat dessert. If you absolutely have to eat dessert then we suggest either having a small piece of someone else’s or opt to take a piece of dessert home to try the next day or some time during the week.
Drink Water
Water helps to flush out the foods, sugars, and other things that may be lurking in your mouth. Water can also help you fill up, which translates into less room for food, which translates into less calories. It’s a win-win situation.

Don’t Forget to Floss

BBQ’s result in one thing: lots of various meats. Meat is a food option that almost always ends up stuck between teeth. Make sure you find the time to floss either after your 4th of July meal, or at the very least sometime before you go to bed. The fastest way to tooth decay is through foods that sit in your teeth. Don’t rush the process either; make sure you give your mouth a good proper flossing.
By following our handy tips on eating healthy for 4th July, you won’t feel so bogged down the next day and you you’ll have done your best to keep your dental health in check, as well as your overall health.
Most importantly… Have a great, fun-filled 4th of July!

Recent Studies Suggest Gum Disease Linked to Heart Disease

A recent study involving mice has found a possible link between gum disease and heart disease.
gum diseaseSome background on the subject matter: the mice were carefully manipulated by carrying 4 kinds of infectious bacteria that are known to cause gum disease. After given the bacteria, the mice were heavily scrutinized for any alarming symptoms of heart disease including inflammation and increases in cholesterol levels. Both inflammation and increases in cholesterol were reported in the findings.
The American Heart Association warns people not to jump so fast to conclusions as there hasn’t been any definitive evidence proving a link between gum disease and heart disease. As of now, evidence only suggests a causal relationship between the two.

Preventing Gum Disease

Here’s the most important takeaway, whether gum disease causes heart disease or not: you should always go the extra mile in keeping your oral health in great shape, as you would with any other part of your body when you decide to workout. In a very basic sense: brushing and flossing is a workout for your mouth!
Gum disease has various stages of infection with gingivitis being the 1st stage, a stage that can be reversed. If the disease reaches your tooth, then gum disease treatment by an oral surgeon may be in check.
Gum disease is a highly preventable disease when you stay consistent on brushing your teeth in a proper manner, and of course flossing every day (pro tip: it’s best to floss at night after food has accumulated throughout the day). The final knockout punch in preventing gum disease is to visit your Woodland Hills dentist, or any dentist, for a professional cleaning that simply cannot be achieved in the confines of your home.